RBHS chancellor Strom aids study development for VA
Chancellor of Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences (RBHS) Brian L. Strom chaired the committee which developed a study protocol for the United States Department of Veteran Affairs’ (VA) investigation into the impacts of opioids and sedatives, according to a press release.
“These records might reveal important insights that could inform the use of opioid treatment as part of chronic pain management,” Strom said, according to the release. “The committee’s report gives the VA guidelines on how to research the effects of starting veterans on an opioid for chronic pain while they are taking benzodiazepines and the effects of tapering patients off opioids and the relationship to any subsequent death by suicide or other causes.”
Statistics show that approximately 20 veterans kill themselves every day, according to the release. The statistic caused enough alarm within the VA that it asked the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine to develop the protocols Strom chaired.
The investigation now goes into the testing phase, where it will evaluate a group given opioids and another a placebo, according to the release.
“Investigations using existing data are an excellent opportunity to use VA medical records to clarify the connections between important clinical conditions, changes in opioid and benzodiazepine prescribing practices over the years 2010 to 2017, and outcomes,” Strom said, according to the release.
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